We explored the impact of introducing a high performance point of care test (POCT) for influenza and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) on an acute paediatric ward of a large London hospital during influenza season compared to standard care of using a laboratory-based test. We estimated the outcomes before and after implementing a POCT (Enigma® MiniLab™ FluAB-RSV test) for paediatric patients admitted to an acute respiratory ward in the 2013/14 and 2014/15 respiratory seasons. There was a significant reduction in reimbursement charges for influenza- and RSV-negative patients, for the full hospital stay and the period on the acute paediatric ward after implementing the POCT, however, these differences disappeared when controlling for top-up service charges. More appropriate treatment of patients with influenza occurred after implementing the POCT (40% versus 13% received oseltamivir, p=0.02). There was no difference in length of stay between the two periods. Findings indicate cost savings for commissioners and hospitals, even without a reduction in the length of stay.
Vecino-Ortiz AI, Glover RE, Douthwaite ST, et al. Estimating the clinical impact and costs of implementing a point of care test for influenza A/B and respiratory syncytial virus on an acute paediatric hospital inpatient ward. Society for Medical Decision Making. 12-14 June 2016. London, UK.